A World Of Grandiose Creature:Part Three
After the harrowing brush with death I experienced last week on Mystery Island I decided it would be better to venture to a place a lot safer for Neopets like me. It's a place that is now peaceful, but has a marred history. It existed in relative peace for a very long time until there was a massive famine in 300 BN. During this time the residents starved, relying on meager rations of potatoes and other crops they were able to pull together, but the starvation led to catastrophe. Eventually they were able to restore balance to the land with a magical orb. This magical orb wasn't the end of their problems, it was actually the beginning of a new problem...good grief...and led to a war with Darigan Citadel. This led to another wave of attacks from Lord Kass after he took over Darigan Citadel from the previously defeated Lord Darigan, leading to Meridell being crushed.
Are you as confused as I am yet?
It gets more confusing with a bunch of time travel, some adventurers falling through portals, the rewriting of history as we know it, yada yada. Some of my colleagues, those versed in history, have come to a consensus that Meridell itself actually exists in some kind of funky time warp. Present day in Meridell is actually 300 or so years behind us here in the rest of Neopia! So going to visit is quite literally stepping back in time. Weird, right?
All this confusion and hub bub has led to a lot of weird things going down in Meridell. Specifically with one giant creature, and a mysterious group of creatures, and I'll be diving into both.
Turmaculus isn't as mysterious as things like the Snow Beasts or Coconut People, he doesn't live in an obscure location and he's not tucked away in some formidable land that is unwelcoming to visitors. He behaves the opposite of the Snowager, as he's generally not aggressive and he spends most of his time asleep.
The reason I wanted to study him was to see if there is a pattern to his behaviors. You see, he gives gifts to Petpets who go and wake him up! But he is such a heavy sleeper that it is near impossible to wake him most of the time. Sometimes he wakes up in an aggressive manner and devours the Petpet that was sent to him by their owner...I think the Petpet Protection League would have something to say about this...
I spent a few tiresome days just sitting and observing. What was nice about this was that I was in no danger as I'm not a Petpet, and I got to have fresh and delicious Meridell potatoes delivered to me! This is the kind of luxury I could get used to, sadly I know I have a tougher mission up next. I present to you the notes from my research:
11:07 AM NST - A Slorg approaches, fails to wake.
12:10 PM NST - A ghoti approaches, fails to wake.
4:16 PM NST - A walking carpet approaches, Turmaculus wakes up and gives him a gift.
4:18 PM NST - A Slorg approaches, Turmaculus wakes up and grants an avatar.
At this point a lot of people started approaching, sending in their petpets. It seems that word had traveled fast that he was awake. It seemed random when Turmaculus would occasionally eat a petpet, not determined at all by species or method of waking. Maybe he was hungrier than others.
The bizarre thing is the Turmaculus appears to be a severely overgrown Turmac, which in itself is a petpet. I wondered if he would eat a Turmac if given the opportunity but during my days of research I did not see a single one approach. I can understand why, they are an expensive petpet to obtain and most owners wouldn't want to risk that kind of rarity. Hopefully I can get some additional funding after all these findings are published and I can test it out for myself.
5:01 PM NST - A Doglefox approaches, fails to wake.
At this point, I realized Turmaculus most only be awake for one hour at a time, similar to how the Snowager only sleeps for one hour at a time. After careful observation, I noticed that he will be awake for two hours a day, and always at the same number. So if he was awake at 4 AM NST, he will be awake again at 4 PM NST. However, he day to day schedule changes so it is very hard to predict. There seems to be a slight pattern that I've noticed, but it isn't consistent enough to properly understand. If you hear in the morning that he was awake, check back 12 hours after that time and you should have some luck.
I don't understand why he devours some and not others, that seems to be totally random. I watched him eat many petpets, but there was no consistency between who he would eat. Sometimes he'd eat two to three Slorgs in a row, and then a bunch of Slorgs would walk away with a piece of treasure. Hmmm...maybe he is truly random in his behavior...
Who is not random in their behavior, however, are the Ixi Raiders. I called up my colleague from Mystery Island, Dr. Zardulu, to travel out and help me with this task again. Similar to the Coconut People, the Ixi Raiders are an aggressive group that live in the Meridell forests and mountains. They are south of the capital, just outside a small village named Cogham that is filled with a mining population. The Ixi Raiders occasionally swarm down on the village and terrorize it, but sometimes they show up in a more peaceful way and attempt to trade with villagers. I wanted to get to the bottom of this, try to open up lines of communication with them, and not get attacked like we did with the Coconut People.
"All packed up, ready to go," said Dr. Zardulu. She had been studying the language of the Ixi Raiders and felt confident communicating with them if we were able to get close enough and establish that we were friendly.
We set out, leaving Cogham behind and approaching the forests. Within minutes we were surrounded by the Ixi Raiders. They don't look exactly like regular Ixi, they have slender upper bodies and more closely resemble centaurs of some kind.
I transcribed this after the fact, Dr. Zardulu was working in their native tongue and I was left standing in bewilderment at the time. It was a terrifying ordeal not knowing if they were casually chatting or negotiating over my life.
"Halt! You can not enter," said what appeared to be the leader of the group.
"We are researchers, we just wanted to talk to you. We are not trying to take your land," Dr. Zardulu kept a confidence about her, trying not to appear as terrified as I was. "We are working with the Cogham residents and want to know what your needs are, what causes you to attack sometimes and want to trade peacefully others."
The Ixi Raiders seemed shocked at her proficiency in their language.
"We want food, weapons, goods," he said. "And if we have nothing to trade, then we take. This is our land and they have tried to take it over many times. We are claiming what is rightfully ours."
"Yes, that land was yours," Dr. Zardulu acknowledged. "Unfortunately it was taken many years before the current residents live their. They had no hand in stealing your land. They do not want to dominate any other part of your land, they don't want the steppe you reside on. They just want peace with you all. They like the items you have to offer, they like to trade with you, but they fear for their lives when you all storm into town and cause havoc." Dr. Zardulu was elegant in her words, trying to find a way to convey that neither side was in the right but that they could work together to fix their problems.
At this moment a giant centaur-Scorchio mix descended into mix, stepping forward.
"My name is Geirrod Sternhoof," his voice bellowed. At this point I had no idea what was going on and was sure he was to kill us. "I am one of the leaders of our group. I do believe it is in our best interest to achieve peace with the villagers, but I want promises that they will not attempt to take on any more of our land. In exchange we will trade peacefully and continue to protect our forest. We don't want unwelcomed visitors."
Dr. Zardulu nodded.
"I'll talk to them."
The circle opened to allow us out and we headed back to Cogham. Dr. Zardulu filled me in on all the happenings and all that was said. Once we arrived back to the village we gathered everyone in the town and gave them the demands of the Ixi Raiders and Geirrod. They listened intently, nodding along, understanding of the hardships the raiders had gone through at the hands of the villagers' ancestors.
"We agree to their terms," one of the elders spoke on behalf of the village.
Without the help of Dr. Zardulu, peace may have never been established between Cogham and the Ixi Raiders. I would love to credit myself, as I had to idea to do all this in the first place, but I can't discredit the work my colleague put in to make this happen. I'm just happy this went much smoother than our time with the Coconut People...and smoother than the adventure ahead...
To be continued…